Ministry’s transport team yet to meet on eTransport student card issue

The Minister for Local Government Premila Kumar. Picture: FT FILE/JOVESA NAISUA

EDUCATION Minister Rosy Akbar is yet to meet the ministry’s transport team to decide on the 4.30pm deadline of eTransport cards use by students under the State’s bus fare subsidy scheme.

This follows the announcement by Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum during 2019/2020 National Budget announcement that the subsidised bus cards for school children had been abused by both parents and students – and as a result, Government would restrict the use of the card to 4.30pm.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum also said the Government had to restrict some of the assistance after they found loopholes in the program.

He said a high number of truancy cases was recorded when students were given the choice to board any public bus.

Ms Akbar says the ministry is aware of some students taking part in extra-curricular activities and they will work on ways on how to best accommodate students who would like to use the subsidised cards after the 4.30pm deadline.

When questioned on when the change would come into effect, Ms Akbar said she would need to confirm it first.

“I can’t give you details on that, I really need to sit with the transport team to see how this thing will need to work,” she added.

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